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Hyundai Veloster Concept

Prototype Veloster testing alongside a VW Scirocco  (Source: Motor Authority)
Hyundai is taking on the big guns from Japan

Reaction to Honda's CR-Z two-seater has been mixed. While the vehicle attempts to capture some of the essence of the CRX which came two decades before it, its performance (0 to 60 mph in around 10 seconds) and fuel economy aren't exactly inspiring given its hybrid powertrain.

The CR-Z only manages to achieve 31/37 mpg (city/highway) with a manual transmission and 36/38 mpg with a CVT transmission -- both figures are well below that of the larger and heavier Toyota Prius.

Hyundai, which is doing its best to punch Toyota and Honda (among others) right in the throat, is now said to be setting its targets on the CR-Z. According to Autoblog, the upcoming Hyundai Veloster -- the replacement for the Hyundai Tiburon -- will achieve 40 mpg by using a regular four-cylinder engine. This shouldn't be too hard a target for Hyundai to reach considering that its 3,200-pound Sonata midsize sedan can already hit 35 mpg on the highway.

While the CR-Z needs a hybrid powertrain to extract somewhat disappointing fuel economy numbers given its 2,750-pound weight, Hyundai says that it needs no such excess baggage. The lighter Veloster is said to be powered by a 1.6-liter engine producing around 140 hp. For comparison, Honda's CR-Z is powered by a 122 hp four-cylinder engine coupled with a 13 hp electric motor.

And if toppling the CR-Z in fuel economy and performance wasn't enough, Hyundai will likely also undercut the pricing of the CR-Z as well due to the Veloster's lack of an expensive hybrid powertrain and batteries. The Veloster also comes with the added utility of seating for four people instead of only two like the CR-Z

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RE: Higher Goals Needed
By EJ257 on 6/22/2010 9:01:40 AM , Rating: 5
Actually we would be close to 70mpg today if it wasn't for all the safety features in today's Civic. Compare your 1990 Civic to the 2010 model and see the weight difference. Any advancements we've made in engine & drive train efficiency has been negated/eaten up by all that extra weight. I bet if you swapped your Civic's engine for a modern one you'll get even higher mileage than right now.

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By transamdude95 on 6/22/2010 9:11:13 AM , Rating: 2
I agree on the safety requirements hindering progress of efficiency. Maybe if we made having a drivers license more of a privelege (with tougher testing), we would have safer/smarter drivers and not need so many safety features on cars.

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By xsilver on 6/22/2010 9:23:57 AM , Rating: 5
when lobby groups are able to force hybid cars to make "noise" just for safety, I dont have high hopes for that.

Standard diesel cars are already getting 50mpg+ so unless you're getting 70-80+ its hardly inspiring.

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By TheMouse on 6/22/2010 9:28:59 AM , Rating: 4
Silence is golden.

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By AlexWade on 6/22/2010 9:30:57 AM , Rating: 2
It is my opinion that nobody is perfect. Even if we had stricter requirements to get a license, I still want all the extra safety requirements. Even the best driver is going to make a mistake. I want to protect myself from that. That is why the first thing I look at in a car is the safety rating.

And I do agree we need to make it much harder to get a driver's license. It is also my opinion that no less than 50% of the people on the road should not be allowed to drive.

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By marvdmartian on 6/22/2010 10:26:09 AM , Rating: 3
This is exactly the reason. That, and the heavier side impact construction required in today's cars.

I remember going to an auto junk yard back in the early 90's, and seeing a lot of these late 80's/early 90's Japanese compacts and sub-compacts that had been t-boned, and it would pretty much crush the side of the car to the point where it's doubtful anyone would have survived the accident if they'd been sitting there.

Add to that the weight of airbags and other mandated safety gear, and you've got much heavier vehicles nowadays. Until the more exotic materials available become more commonly used (carbon fiber, etc), we won't see the days of too many vehicles under 2000 pounds curb weight, if any even exist now (maybe the Smart4two?).

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By mydogfarted on 6/22/2010 10:47:40 AM , Rating: 2
Indeed. I used to have a '90 Civic 4 door. I always felt the car was way too light. The final straw for me was when I hit a puddle on the highway, and hydroplaned over completely into the next lane. I bought a new car, my family made me give it to my sister who needed a car, and it was totaled shortly there after a simple accident.

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By mindless1 on 6/22/2010 12:49:32 PM , Rating: 4
Totalling a '90 Civic means little, any '90 car that isn't slated to be a classic would be totaled if you merely cracked the plastic on the front grill by kicking it.

That's not meant to be snobbery against older cars, rather that most types of body repair on something that age can easily reach a high % of its market value if it weren't damaged if not exceeding that value... unless you DIY with junkyard parts.

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By lelias2k on 6/23/2010 5:10:22 PM , Rating: 2
lol... you think it hydroplaned because it was too light?

There are multiple factors involved, and under the right circumstances any vehicle will hydroplane.

RE: Higher Goals Needed
By Spuke on 6/22/2010 3:28:49 PM , Rating: 2
I bet if you swapped your Civic's engine for a modern one you'll get even higher mileage than right now.
I had a 1992 Civic hatch with a 2004 Acura RSX Type S K20 engine in it. Granted, mine was um, not stock but I still got 36 mpg out of it when I stayed off the high cam. That was very difficult though and I didn't do it very often (not the point of the car).

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